Just when we thought Kate Steinle’s family had endured the worst…

 - Photo courtesy of AllenBWest.com
Kate Steinle & Jose Ines Garcia Zarate

San Francisco court takes it to a new awful level


I think it’s called “adding insult to injury” — some also call it pouring salt into an open wound. It happens when one believes further disrespect isn’t possible, and then it’s taken to another level. We’ve addressed this case many times, most recently when the final verdict was announced late last year.

It’s the case of Kate Steinle, the young California woman shot and killed by a criminal illegal immigrant. And just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse…

As reported by the Associated Press, “A Mexican man acquitted of murder in the shooting death of a San Francisco woman [Kate Steinle] that sparked a national immigration debate was sentenced Friday to time served for illegal gun possession. 

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Samuel Feng also denied a defense request to grant Jose Ines Garcia Zarate a new trial for his conviction of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Garcia Zarate will now be taken into U.S. custody to face two federal gun possession charges. The San Francisco Sheriff’s Department said it would hold Garcia Zarate in jail until U.S. marshals pick him up. His lawyer, Tony Serra, said he expects the transfer this weekend. Serra also said he plans to inject politics as much as he can into his defense of Garcia Zarate in federal court. That would be a marked departure from the state case, in which the judge banned any mention of Garcia Zarate’s immigration status and the nationwide debate around it.

Garcia Zarate had previously been convicted of illegally re-entering the United States and been deported five times before Kate Steinle was fatally shot on a popular pier in July 2015. The San Francisco sheriff’s department released him from jail several weeks before the shooting, ignoring a federal request to detain him for a sixth deportation. 

San Francisco’s “sanctuary city” policy bars local officials from helping U.S. immigration authorities in deportation matters unless they have a warrant. Federal prosecutors charged Garcia Zarate with two gun possession counts after a San Francisco jury acquitted him of murder but found him guilty of a gun charge. Garcia Zarate was sentenced Friday to three years in jail for the state conviction. He has been behind bars in San Francisco since July 1, 2015, and with credit for time served, he fulfilled the sentence, the judge ruled. 

His lawyers said he has served a total of 17 years in federal prisons for three illegal re-entry convictions. San Francisco public defender Jeff Adachi on Friday criticized federal prosecutors for adding the charges, which he called “ridiculous” and politically motivated.”

It is beyond unconscionable what has transpired in this case. It is unbelievable that Zarate was not convicted of manslaughter. He’s guilty of firing a firearm in a public space resulting in the death of an individual, an American citizen, a young woman. I guess we have another example of the real “War on Women”, the progressive socialist left’s love affair with criminal illegal immigrants, at the detriment of American women.

And for this chucklehead San Francisco public defender Jeff Adachi to make the claim that federal gun charges are “ridiculous and politically motivated” is absurd. What is “ridiculous and politically motivated” is that a multiple deported criminal illegal immigrant felon is walking free after killing an American woman, Kate Steinle, who sadly asked her dad as she was dying, “Please help me.”

But, when it comes to the ideological agenda of the liberal progressive left — namely rewarding illegal immigrants — the lives, safety, and security of Americans mean nothing. California is now a “sanctuary state,” San Francisco was already a sanctuary city. The judge in the murder case did not allow any evidence, nothing about the illegal immigrant and felon status of Zarate…in other words, judicial activism suppressed key evidence about the nature of the defendant. And what do you think motivated that? Yes, politics!

And now, to have a judge state that Zarate is free, even after the federal gun possession charges of which he is guilty, due to “time served” is indeed adding injury to insult for Kate Steinle, and her family.

And now we have the Democrats threatening to shut down the federal government if they don’t get their way on an illegal immigration issue, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). This whole matter is the result of an unconstitutional action taken by Barack Obama. Just the same, any declarations by states and cities of sanctuary status for illegal immigrants is in violation of our Constitution and the sovereignty of the United States. Yep, of course I believe in states’ rights, but the blatant disregard of our rule of law? Nah.

The stance for President Trump and the GOP to take is simple. There is no resolution for DACA unless there are no sanctuary states and cities, no harboring of criminal illegal immigrants, full local law enforcement cooperation with federal authorities. There is no discussion on DACA until there are no more “diversity visas,” or “chain migration visas.” There is no legislation for DACA resolution unless we secure our southern border, and that means constructing a border security wall and accompanying enforcement measures. The left must come to realize this is not a winning issue for them, and if they believe support for illegal immigration provides success in the 2018 midterm elections, they are grossly ill-informed.

The message is simple: it’s the Democrat Party of illegal immigrants, especially criminal ones. Democrats couldn’t care less if criminal, felonious, illegal immigrants gun us down as we’re out for a walk with our family. What matters to them is their ideological agenda, and we don’t want America to be modeled after or emulate California.

For God’s sake, someone has to step up and defend the honor and memory of Kate Steinle and her family, along with all the Americans who’ve lost their lives because the left loves criminal illegal immigrants, such as MS-13. Now is when the GOP needs to steel its spine and not relent. This is America, and we’re not a damn sanctuary for people here illegally who disrespect our sovereignty and our rule of law.

To the Steinle family, words just cannot express the sorrow I feel not just for your loss, but for the added disrespect…from the progressive socialist left. This must not stand.

Editor’s Note: This column previously appeared at AllenBWest.com. Used with the permission of the author.

Lt. Col. Allen B. West is the former U.S. Congressman representing Florida’s 22nd District, a Fox News Contributor, a contributing columnist for Townhall.com, the former Executive Director of the National Center for Policy Analysis in Dallas Texas, and the author of Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Faith, Family and Freedom. Col. West is the third of four generations of military servicemen in his family. During his 22 year career in the United States Army, he was awarded the Bronze Star, 3 Meritorious Service Medals, 3 Army Commendation Medals (1 with Valor device), and a Valorous Unit Award. In 1993 he was named the US Army ROTC Instructor of the Year. Col. West believes it will be principled constitutional conservative policies, not politics, which will secure a sound economic future for Americans.